Bombshell Wall Street Journal expose details more Activision malice.
It feels like every time a rock is overturned at Activision Blizzard the only thing we get is more evidence of disgusting conduct at the company, and how it was covered up by management. Today the Wall Street Journal unleashed a bombshell report reminding us that the worst is probably still yet to be revealed. In an article written by Kirsten Grind, Ben Fritz and Sarah E. Needleman, the piece discusses various allegations against Activision by employees.
One such story is that of Dan Bunting, co-head of Treyarch Studios, and how Activision CEO Bobby Kotick apparently intervened personally to prevent Bunting from being fired after he was accused of sexual harassment in 2017. Kotick himself has been accused of personally covering up allegations of sexual harassment, rape, and more, hiding the information from Activision’s board. Kotick was also accused of leaving a voicemail in 2006 threatening to have an assistant killed, which the company downplayed by calling “obviously hyperbolic.”
And in case you weren’t angry enough, it appears that Activision can’t stop mistreating female employees even in the middle of multiple lawsuits and investigations. This year Activision promoted Jen Oneal as co-lead of Blizzard following the disgraceful resignation of J. Allen Brack. Oneal’s promotion seemed to be a publicity stunt to prove Activision could totally treat women equally to the men in the company. It turns out they couldn’t, as Oneal left the position just a few months later after internally voicing her concern that the company “would never prioritize our people the right way.” Oh and they paid her less than her co-lead, while in the middle of a lawsuit in part regarding their practices of paying women less than men.
Just to reiterate: Activision Blizzard was sued this summer for, among other things, paying women less than men. In response, they ousted Blizzard’s president and replaced him with two new co-leaders: a man and a woman. They then… paid the woman less than the man, she says.
— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) November 16, 2021
Since the California lawsuit, Activision Blizzard has received more than 500 reports from current and former employees related to sexual harassment, bullying, pay disparity, and more. As heads continue to roll in management, more eyes turn to Bobby Kotick as head honcho of the abusive culture and a participant himself. Whether investors are interested in removing him from the company will have to be seen, but it doesn’t seem like Kotick will be going willingly.